12 Beers of Christmas 2012 – Day 7 – Mouette a Trois from Karl Strauss Brewing

On the 7th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

Mouette a Trois, Karl Strauss Brewing Company, 8.5% ABV

Mouette a Trois, a Holiday Fruitcake Ale, from Karl Strauss Brewing.

Mouette a Trois, a Holiday Fruitcake Ale, from Karl Strauss Brewing.

Like The Bruery, Karl Strauss Brewing Company produces a series of holiday ales inspired by the Christmas carol The 12 Days of Christmas. Unlike The Bruery, Karl Strauss adds their own Southern California twist. Mouette a Trois translates into “3 seagulls” and is probably inspired by the marine bird that is ubiquitous in the skies in and around San Diego.

Mouette a Trois in a glass. Pretty as a Christmas ornament.

Mouette a Trois in a glass. Pretty as a Christmas ornament.

Mouette a Trois pours out a clear, reddish-brown color with ruby highlights, and a beige colored head. The aroma is subtle, but is comprised of toasty/malty caramel notes along with a fruity character, and cinnamon, nutmeg, and gingerbread spices. This beer has caramel and toasty malt flavors. It’s fruity, like candied fruits, but I can’t tell which ones they are. There’s a spice character to the beer that reminds me of gingerbread. Hop flavor is low, hop bitterness is low/medium-low. The body is full, carbonation is spritzy, and the finish is dry.

Side label of Mouette a Trois from Karl Strauss Brewing.

Side label of Mouette a Trois from Karl Strauss Brewing.

Karl Strauss says this ale is their “holiday fruit cake” ale and I think they hit the nail on the head on all levels. This is by far the most interesting beer I’ve had this holiday season. It’s layered, complex, and changes character as it warms up. There’s a lot going on, and I’m glad that I can’t figure it all out. A little mystery, like a wrapped present under the Christmas tree, is a good thing sometimes.

Joyeux Noël!

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